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Hinduism

Beliefs and Practices

In the series Religious Beliefs & Practices

Jeaneane Fowler was formerly Head of Philosophy and Religious Studies at the University of Wales, Newport, and later an Honorary Research Fellow. Her publications include Hinduism: Beliefs and Practices (Choice Outstanding title, 1997); Humanism; World Religions: An introduction for students (editor); and Perspectives of Reality –an introduction to the philosophy of Hinduism.


“A wonderful balance of detail and clarity with excellent introductory essays on the Indus Valley civilization, the Vedic Period, the Upanishads, and devotional Hinduism.” Religious Studies Review




Paperback ISBN: 978-1-898723-60-8
Paperback Price: £12.95 / $19.95
Release Date: January 1997
   
Page Extent / Format: 172 pp. / 216 x 138 mm
Illustrated: No
   

 



Foreword by W. Owen Cole
Preface and Acknowledgements


Introduction

Part One The Hindu Way of Life
1 Fundamental Beliefs
Meaning of the term Hinduism
The Hindu concept of God
Samsara, the cycle of reincarnation
Karma, the law of cause and effect
Dharma, what is right
Moksa, liberation from samsara

2 Hindu Scriptures
Sruti and smrti literature
The Mahabharat
The Bhagavad Gita
The Ramayan
The concept of avatars

3 Varnadharma
Varna, class
Outcastes
Jati, caste

4 Asramadharma
The first asrama, the student
The second asrama, the householder
The third asrama, the forrest hermit
The fourth asrama, the wandering ascetic

5 Gods and Goddesses
Manifestations of Brahman
Visnu the Pervader
Krisna
Siva the Auspicious
Ganesh
The Mother Goddess
Laksmi
The sakti aspects of Siva: Parvati
Uma
Durga
Kali

6 Worship in the Home and Temple
Images
Other objects of worship
Significant aspects of puja
Darsan
Puja in the home
Puja in the temple
Puja as shrines
The paths to God

7 Life-cycle Rites in the Hindu Family
The family
Samskaras
Upanayama, the sacred-thread ceremony
Bethrothal and marriage
Vivah, the marriage ceremony
Life in the home
Death

8 Symbols
Aum
The svastika
The lotus
Deities as symbols

9 Food and Dress
Vegetariansim
Caste regulations
Pukka and katcha foods
The role of women
Dress

10 Hindu Festivals
The Festival of Divali
Holi
Raksa Bandhan
Krisna Janamastami
Ugadi
Ram Navami
Navaratri
Dussehra
Ganesh Chaturhi

11 Yatra: Pilgrimage
The importance of pilgrimage
Benares (Varnasi)
Puri
Vrindaban and Ramesvaram
Kumbha Mela
Rivers

Part Two History and Tradition
12 The Indus Valley Civilisation
Early Settlements
The Indus valley excavations
The Indus valley script
The Indus valley people
The Indus valley cities
The great bath
Seals
Proto-Siva
Other seals
Figurines
Worship of the Mother Goddess
Belief in afterlife
The demise of the civilisation

13 The Vedic period
The Aryan migrations
The Vedas
Vedic religion
Vedic deities
Agni
Soma
Indra
Varuna
Rudra
Prajapati
Surya and Savitr: the solar deities
Yajna
Rta
Monotheistic trends

14 The Vedanta
Meaning of the term Vedanta
The Upanisands
The path of intuitive knowledge
Monism
Brahman
Brahman-atman
Maya
Theism in the Upanisands
Evolution of the self
Moksa: the final goal

15 Devotional Hinduism
The Move Towards theism
Bhakti
Surrender of the self
The importance of avatars
Devotiona scriptures
The theism of the Bhagavad Gita
The Grace of God
Monotheism and panentheism

16 Unity in Diversity
Accommodation
Unity of apparent dualities
The way forward

Notes
Glossary
Bibliography
Index


Review Quotes to Follow


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